Local Women: Susan Moss

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Susan Moss moved in with her family after being diagnosed with diabetic peripheral neuropathy in 2000. Because of her affliction, she is print impaired. She soon discovered the WKAR Reading Assistance Program, which broadcasts readings over the radio. Today, Moss is one of its biggest cheerleaders. Q: Can you tell me a little bit about the reading service? A: The radio looks like a regular radio, and in fact, you can get FM stations on it, but there is also a mechanism in the radio — somehow that’s magic; I don’t know how that works. You listen to this 24-hour service and you are able to access the local Lansing paper, the Detroit paper, as well as the grocery ads … They also have gone to the BBC radio programs for a good part of their programming, especially overnight … Books are also read on it. Magazine and news articles are read on it. And they have a schedule they publish, so you can listen to it at your convenience, and it’s really great to have that access and to have that independence — being able to know what’s going on in the world and your community, especially when you’re blind, but also if you’re print impaired. Q: How did you hear about the Reading Assistance Service? A: I heard about it on the television on WKAR, and I sent my dad over to get the radio … After several years, (producer) Brad (Walker) called me and asked if I would do a PSA for them. He came out with his crew and interviewed me, and that was a lot of fun. Then they started showing the PSA, and I had a lot of people at church comment, “I saw you, I saw you!” … That’s what it’s all about, getting as many people as possible using the service … We wouldn’t be able to have the service without the volunteers at all. They’re the unsung heroes … These are community people who do this — take the time out of their busy schedule to do it … It’s good to have a reading service. TV isn’t always the way you want to get your information. This is very personal, in a way … I think it’s a really great program. Q: And you worked for a similar program in New Mexico? A: I worked for the New Mexico Commission for the Blind in Albuquerque for their Newsline for the Blind program from 1990-1993, and it was the third in the nation at the time. We had over 150 volunteers that I coordinated, and that was my job — never thinking that I would be able to use the service of a similar style. For more information about the WKAR Reading Assistance Program, visit http://wkar.org/radioreadingservice or contact Brad Walker at (517) 432-3120 ext. 346.
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Tags: Local Women, WKAR Reading Assistance Program

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